Philips BenQ Digital Storage (PBDS), a joint venture between Royal Philips Electronics and BenQ established in February 2003, has been reorganized to manage Philips' patent royalties for optical disc drives (ODDs) with operations to begin on August 7, according to PBDS.
The reorganization was due to Lite-On IT acquiring BenQ's ODD business unit in April of this year, noted PBDS. Philips originally negotiated and collected royalty fees for its ODD patents but has authorized PBDS to act as its agent after the Lite-On IT buyout, according to PBDS.
In the reorganization, Alpha Tsai, originally associate vice president for BenQ's ODD business, replaced Joseph Chuang, currently CEO of Philips Taiwan, as CEO of PBDS, the company indicated. In addition, PBDS took over all of BenQ's ODD R&D and sales staff members and has set up a branch office in the US and another in Europe, the company noted.
With PBDS now handling Philips' ODD royalty affairs, the company stands a good chance of becoming one of the world's top ODD suppliers/vendors by partnering with Taiwanese OEM/ODM ODD makers so that their production is exempt from royalty charges under licensed use of patents from Philips.
Personally, I think this is a huge waste of talent. I'm a big fan of Lite-On, but when you compare their DVD writers to BenQ's... you get the point.